A derelict vessel in Ladysmith. (Black Press file photo)

A derelict vessel in Ladysmith. (Black Press file photo)

Feds to pay for 80 abandoned boat assessments and removals in B.C.

Transport Canada will work with partners on Vancouver Island and central coast

The federal government has announced funding and partnerships to remove dozens of derelict boats from B.C.’s shores.

Transport Canada announced on Tuesday, Feb. 16, that it will spend $1.7 million on 95 boat assessment and boat removal projects in B.C., Nova Scotia and Newfoundland and Labrador.

Thirty-seven of the 51 derelict vessel removals will be done in B.C., as well as 43 of the 44 abandoned boat assessments.

“These abandoned vessels cause all kinds of environmental and ecological hazards to the communities around them, to the environment around them and it is really important that we are doing this work,” said Omar Alghabra, federal minister of transport, speaking to Black Press.

His ministry announced that it would be paying 100 per cent of assessment and removal costs on abandoned vessels, up from 75 per cent in previous years, in consideration of economic impacts related to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Alghabra, who has been minister of transport for just five weeks, said colleagues have advised him that the Wrecked, Abandoned or Hazardous Vessels Act is working “great,” but have at the same time reminded him “that it’s important to continue to build on it.”

The ministry says its abandoned boats program has led to 109 assessments and 112 boat removals.

“I believe there are lessons being learned from every case and every assessment and we take these lessons and certainly benefit from them in the following years,” Alghabra said.

The partnerships announced this week – with Coastal Restoration Society, Salish Sea Industrial Services, Heiltsuk Horizon Maritime Services and We are the Change for Humanity – involve assessment of 18 boats in Barkley Sound, 12 in Nootka Sound, eight in the Bella Bella area, three in Bamfield Harbour and two in Alert Bay and removal of 24 boars in Victoria, 11 in Tofino and two in Alert Bay.

The minister said contracts and arrangements vary but the federal government has “clear expectations” about the work to be done and timelines.

“We are confident that these partners have the abilities and the know-how to get the job done,” he said.

READ ALSO: Cleanup program targets B.C. marine debris and derelict vessels

READ ALSO: Huge wooden boat sinks in Ladysmith Harbour, fuel spill contained



editor@nanaimobulletin.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Ocean Protection

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Hospital outbreaks included in Fraser Health update Feb. 28, 2021. (Black Press file)
Fraser Health declared COVID-19 outbreaks at Chilliwack General and Surrey Memorial

The medicine units are temporarily closed but ERs remain open, according to Fraser Health update

High winds Friday made perfect conditions for kite-surfers near the White Rock Pier. (Aaron Hinks photo)
PHOTOS: Kite-surfers take flight near White Rock Pier

Aerial performance put on near iconic waterfront attraction

White Rock City Hall (Peace Arch News photo)
City of White Rock seeking input on draft financial plan

Plan includes tax rate increase of 4.28 per cent

B.C. researchers are asking for the public’s help in monitoring the bat population. (Cathy Koot photo)
Semiahmoo Peninsula residents asked to monitor bat activity

Researchers keeping eye on spread of white-nose syndrome

Police tape is shown in Toronto Tuesday, May 2, 2017. Statistics Canada says the country’s crime rate ticked up again in 2018, for a fourth year in a row, though it was still lower than it was a decade ago. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Graeme Roy
CRIME STOPPERS: ‘Most wanted’ for the week of Feb. 28

Crime Stoppers’ weekly list based on information provided by police investigators

An animated Gordie Hogg introduces his 'Community Connections' videos. (YouTube screenshot)
Community Connections: Gordie Hogg speaks with Lorne Ginther

Former mayor, MP began posting conversations on YouTube in June

A cross-country skier glides along the banks of the Ottawa River in Ottawa on Thursday, Feb. 25, 2021. Canadians across the country can look forward to a mild spring peppered with the odd winter flashback throughout the first part of the season, according to predictions from one prominent national forecaster. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Mild spring with some wintry blasts predicted for most of Canada: Weather Network

Weather Network is forecasting a slower than average start to spring in British Columbia

AstraZeneca’s vaccines are ready for use at the vaccination center in Apolda, Germany, Sunday, Feb.28, 2021. (Michael Reichel/dpa via AP)
Feds hoping for AstraZeneca shots this week as Pfizer-BioNTech prepare next delivery

The first of those doses could start to arrive in Canada as early as Wednesday

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

An investigation is underway after a man was shot and killed by Tofino RCMP in Opitsaht. (Black Press Media file photo)
Man shot and killed by RCMP near Tofino, police watchdog investigating

Investigation underway by Independent Investigations Office of British Columbia.

B.C. Supreme Court in Vancouver on Tuesday December 11, 2018. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
B.C.’s compromise on in-person worship at three churches called ‘absolutely unacceptable’

Would allow outdoor services of 25 or less by Langley, Abbotsford and Chilliwack churches

Baldy Mountain Resort was shut down on Saturday after a fatal workplace accident. (Baldy Mountain picture)
Alina Durham, mother of Shaelene Bell, lights candles on behalf of Bell’s two sons during a vigil on Saturday, Feb. 27, 2021. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress)
VIDEO and PHOTOS: Candlelight vigil for missing Chilliwack woman sends message of hope

Small group of family, friends gathered to shine light for 23-year-old mother Shaelene Bell

Most Read